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  MSNBC    Hardball With Chris Matthews    News/Business.  (2013) (CC)  

    December 2, 2013
    11:00 - 12:00am PST  

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it just goes together really well. >> duncan, thank you very much for joining us tonight. >> thank you. >> thank you. >> chris hayes is up next. full speed ahead for health care. let's play "hardball." ♪ good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. let me start tonight with this. there ought to be a page for complainers, chronic sour pusses whose fantasy is to burp out a i told you this wouldn't work. today is not a good day for the complainers league.
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it looks like the health care law is open for business. it looks like after all the misery love company types have had their say, a solid majority of the country wants the president's program to make it. the website, we're told, is working. as i said, what a bad day for those little trolls who live under the bridge. david corn is the washington bureau chief nor mother jones magazine and michael tomaski is with the daily beast. i want you to look at this poll and what people think about this. right now 55% of the country supports the idea of making it work. they want to keep it as it is, make it work. only 43% want to repeal it. another interesting number, a little more nuanced according to a current cnn orc poll. a majority of americans 53% said it was too soon to tell. saying it's not seen its day in court. not yet. keep in mind these polls were
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conducted before improvements to the law's website were announced over the weekend. so, david, there's good objective news and good perceptive news. totally 180 from the way this thing's been played in the media. >> now, there's another number you didn't cite there which was by noon today, 375,000 people had gone to the website. probably got close to a million by midnight if you count in the west coast. this shows above everything else, there's still a tremendous demand. this gets to the root of the republican problem here. because people want this, they want it to work. and every day that we get closer to this being implemented well is one day further from republicans being able to say we're going to stop this and take this away from americans who are obviously craving health insurance. >> your not here as often as this guy, but he knows me. one thing i can't stand about the right wing in the country, the way they conflate everything. 9/11, you've got to be for the
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war on iraq. john kerry, he opposed the war. you know, always conflate things together. in this case what they're doing is conflating the troubles of the rollout with the idea of having a national health care plan. the very purpose of it. and what they always do now in the news the last couple weeks is say the thing's a disaster, it's no good. no that doesn't fit with the rollout. it could be very good and have a bad rollout. >> exactly. what they do with that conflating is they're not talking to the middle of america. they're not talking to the middle american who may have been against this at the start, chris. but now that it's there and now the supreme court said it's constitutional and it's in place, they do want to give it a chance. they're talking to their base as they always do. >> why does their base hate it as a concept? >> they've been sold on the idea it's socialism and this and that. it's a republican idea as we all know going back to 1994. but the people want to give it a chance. that number is going to improve. >> so the people that hate it
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and dump on it now would have dumped on the idea if it worked beautifully in rollout. >> the obama care affordable care act has hit the high water mark in terms of opposition. because it had the terrible rollout. you had, you know -- >> but even that 55% are rooting for it. >> it was always like a 45/45 proposition for the last two years. the polls never really change a lot. now every day we go forward, it's going to get closer to working. plus all these benefits that have kicked in that they never want to talk about. we talked about kids under e age of 26 being on policies of their parents. you know, refunds for premiums that are too high. all that stuff is kicking in and it's basically taking root. which is why republicans hate that. i think they're going to back away from the repeal talk. because repeal now means taking a lot of stuff away. >> heard the other day a couple hours ago that he's pushed down. there is some secret new plan for paul ryan. anyway, the president's
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confronted the problems with the law's website. saying it would be vastly improved by december 1st which was yesterday. complaining about errors with registrations. but overall the president's fixer told reporters that it was night and day from where it was on october 1st. well, here's a look at what's been done. traffic problems are tremendously better than they were back in october. the site can now handle roughly 800,000 users every day. that's 800,000. more than two-thirds of the required repairs have been completed. that's a big number when you consider the fact that 600 problems were identified originally. and most importantly the website is far more stable. it's now fully functional more than 90% of the time. so here we have all this news. how's the republican party going to go on this though? they're going to attack the website.
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the website is beginning to work effectively. what are they going to attack next? >> i think they're going to keep attacking the idea of obama care. they're going to keep saying it doesn't work. they'd rather deal with this as an abstraction. as an ideological pinata they can keep swinging at because they know 30% of the public will be with them. they're going to have a hard time attacking the particulars and harder time saying we're going to take those particulars away. where has ted cruz been with his repeal crusade the last couple days? i don't see him out there saying we must end this and go back to nothing. >> he's not quite as strong as he was just a few weeks ago, is he? let's look at this, michael. while the president and his team are confronting problems, the president's enemies continue to root for the worst. this is just a sampling of their reaction to the news. it includes the likes of mr. cruz. about the president's team. look at this how they're dealing with the good news from the president. this is how the bad news bears are handling it.
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>> i don't know how you fix the many fundamental problems of this program. >> when this website eventually gets fixed, the problems wl begin for this administration. this is just beginning the disaster of obama care. >> you never get a second chance to make a first impression. the first impression here was terrible. this thing is going to be an unmitigated political disaster for the president. >> not to be outdone, ted cruz, the tea party fire from texas quickly dismissed the good news telling his supporters via twitter, quote, faulty website is but one symptom of obama care. others higher premiums and cancel plans and decreased access to your doctor. >> i think they're going to have a harder time attacking this plan over and over again. particularly if you have a million people going to the site today and eventually by the end of december having maybe a million people signing up, it shows that people want this. and what are they going to say at that point?
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repeal means saying no to those people who are happy because they've enrolled. we're taking this away from you. that's why october 1st was so important to them. they had to stop this. it was their last chance to stop this before people saw the government might be able to do something right. >> let's go back to the reason people have health care. they do it for the fact we're all mortal and we have illnesses. some of them serious. and medicine costs money. you know, i've learned this myself just in the last 24 hours about one of my sons having a dental plan that doesn't include teeth cleaning, apparently. he got the $500 bill and nobody's going to pay it. apparently if you go to the dentist, you have to specifically ask for something covered by thundershower plan. then when they stick the knife in tooth by tooth, i didn't know that was brushing it. they call it cleaning. and serious problems. hospitalization, medicines, all kinds of things people are going to realize are now covered.
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when are they going to say you know what? i finally have a real health care plan. >> they're starting to already. people have been saying that even since october 1st. it's just those stories have been drowned out by the other stories. that balance is going to start changing. and the scales are going to start tilting. i think as we go forward we're going to hear more and more from people who get cancellation notices who are going to say, gee, my insurance was canceled but i got a better plan and it's a good price. and i can't believe it. and i was able to -- >> when are we going to know the president's made history here. i look back on -- i wasn't around, but social security probably had rough moments. but it's a simple thing. you turn 65, you get your money. the only complication was how much you had to pay in. but like medicare, you turn 65 you have to get it. this one's difficult. you have people at different income levels. >> and it's private, public sort of deals. you're getting services still from private insurance companies
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and all of us who ever dealt with private -- >> when will we know he's over the hump? >> i think by springtime, you know, you'll see what the basic numbers are in terms of enrollment and whether the premiums are going to be shooting up by fall next year. but certainly in time, this is the key thing politically speaking, in time for the 2014 elections you'll know whether this is, indeed, working more or less as obama promised it would and more or less as people want it to work. republicans might find themselves tremendously isolated fighting against something that's working, that's successful. remember, they still have a history of opposing security, medicare, medicaid, and a lot of programs. once they've kicked in and once they've become -- >> let's talk 2016. i don't want to erase the presidency. you've got a debating platform with secretary clinton or anybody else, she'll probably be the nominee, who knows. all you say is what's your plan? you're empty handed.
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whether you're an attractive candidate like christie or someone like that. i'm sorry, i don't have one. well, that's a problem. >> they don't have a plan. they say the same old thing, free market solutions. this is a free market solution, "a." but "b," we know what they're talking about. they're talking about the same health savings accounts that work fine if you're healthy but don't if you're not healthy. and they don't have an idea. and they're going to get more and more isolated. >> we're going to stop now, but this is a good day it could have been a hell of a lot worse. the president was on the ropes there for awhile. >> well, he's off the ropes, but in the sixth or seventh round. it's not over yet. but he's in a better position than he was october 1st. >> i've got to think about that. anyway, thank you david corn who's fine tuning it and michael clamaski. coming up, bill clinton disparaging barack obama and alienating the black supporters in the process.
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now hillary's making sure those bruised feelings are healed and black leaders are behind her. plus the only job where doing nothing is a virtue. being a republican in the current congress. it is by acclimation, of course, the worst congress ever. also republicans peddle the decision to close it. it's all part of an anti-catholic agenda, they say. really? finally you can count on republicans to have a sour note on race. yesterday the rnc tweeted, we remember rosa parks' bold stand on her role on her end of racism. this is "hardball," the place for politics.
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fresh off his big re-election victory in new jersey, chris christie now has a big lead in the latest snapshot of the 2016 republican primary race. according to a new cnn research
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poll, christie's up by nine points over his rival. rand paul second with 15% followed by ted cruz and paul ryan tied for third at 11%. marco rubio is at 10%. and rick perry is incredibly up to 7%. we'll be right back.
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welcome back to "hardball." former secretary of state hillary clinton and husband bill may say she's still undecided about whether she's going to run in 2016, but they are certainly putting pieces in order. their most recent outreach is described in a "new york times" article headlined eye on 2016. clintons rebuild bond with blacks. it says, quote, she and her husband have sought to soothe and strengthing their relationship with african-americans. the constituency that was most scarred during her first bid for the presidency. after comments former president
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bill clinton made about candidate barack obama in the 2008 race. comments that sounded racially insensitive to many ears. black and white. as a way to salve the wound, the profile including funerals for prominent african-americans or commemorations of civil right events of which the clintons have been present. marking the hundredth anniversary of the largest african-american sorority. >> the idea that in the 21st century african-americans would wait in line to vote for ten hours while whites in an affluent precinct next door waited just ten minutes, or that african-americans would receive fliers telling them the wrong time and day to exercise their
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constitutional rights, that is not the america we expect or the america we want for our children. >> well, in the article in the "new york times" i mentioned, former virginia governor the first elected african-american governor in the country recalled a conversation with bill clinton in may this way. i'd be less than honest, the governor said, if i didn't tell you i came away convinced that there was no question about her running. joy reid is msnbc contributor and eugene robinson columnist at "the washington post" and msnbc political analyst. you're smiling, joy. i think it's for me, but maybe it's about the topic. my question is first of all to you to clear the air. do you have any doubts she's making moves to run? >> zero doubt. >> gene? >> she's certainly putting the pieces in place. i have some doubt as to whether she's made a final decision. >> okay. the clintons' rebuilding effort with the black community is
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hang, as i mentioned, because of the comments bill clinton made in 2008. speaking in new hampshire in 2008 when the clinton team was still smarting from the obama victory out in iowa, a frustrated -- i think this is fair to say -- a frustrated bill clinton questioned the authenticity of obama's anti-war stance. some said questioning his campaign. let's listen. >> since you raise the issue, let's go over this again. that is the central argument for his campaign. it doesn't matter that i started running for president less than a year after i got to the senate from the illinois state senate, i am a great speaker, charismatic figure, i'm the only one that had the judgment to oppose this war from the beginning. always, always, always. give me a break. this whole thing is the biggest fairy tale i've ever seen. >> well, the use of the words fairy tale, this whole thing was criticized by some african-american thought leaders.
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am i a thought leader? i know you are, gene. attempted to triflize the win by comparing his expected success to jesse jackson's earlier and ultimately meaningless win. here's the president doing it again. >> what does it say about barack obama that it takes two of you to beat him? >> jesse jackson won in south carolina twice in '84 and '88 and he ran a good campaign. and senator obama has run a good campaign. >> in a column a few days later, eugene sitting here, you characterized the comments this way. quote, the only possible reason for invoking jackson's name was to telegraph the following message. barack obama is black, so if a lot of black people decide to vote for him, that was out of racial solidarity, it doesn't really mean squat. you're good with the language. squat.
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so what you're saying is clinton is saying all your accomplishments so far, winning in iowa, coming here in south carolina being the front runner is squat. >> well -- >> none us were at our best when we're riffed. he's really angry. >> the question zings in. clearly he was a little ticked off. and he responded in that way. it's useful to recall the feelings pretty raw at the time. mine included and others i'm sure. >> what did you make of the fairy tale line? >> the same way. i mean, i thought it was dismissive. >> of the whole candidacy. >> of the whole candidacy and of the whole candidate. so it's very clear that, you know, this was not a great relationship at that time. but it's gotten a lot better. >> well, if obama won they lost. they didn't know you had a
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second try in 2016. >> exactly. but it turns out obama won and then obama won again. and hillary served as the secretary of state. >> you know, joy, one of the reasons i was big on obama was the iraq war issue. because of all these other politicians that supported the war which everybody does. support a war especially in the middle east, it's the safest move. it's the smart move, you know. and this guy, state senator from out in illinois did say rather adroitly and well timed, he said i'm against this damn war. not his words, mine. i think that was the key to a lot of us. white or black. but people like me, a 60-sort of person. the vietnam war still haunts me. wasted lives, wasted hopes, wasted years of our country and killing a lot of other people as well. i didn't think it was a fairy tale. i thought it singled him out as a leader. my thought.
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what's yours? >> exactly. you used the word frustration earlier. that's what you heard. the clintons underestimated a couple of things. on the war issue, they underestimated the strength on the democrats. where they came to vanquish the jacksonites. and their idea was that african-americans and peace liberals. fighting the same two constituencies and i think clinton took for granted on at least one of those two, they had that in the bag. they really underestimated the extent to which african-americans wanted not just a friend in the white house which a clinton coming to ride to the rescue signals, but an african-american themselves. and when a credible candidate presented himself, barack obama, the clintons never thought in a million years he would be viable. when he proved to be viable, african-americans said we want the real thing. not the fictional first black president. >> you're referring to tony morrison.
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>> absolutely. >> tony morrison said bill clinton was the first black president. i think it's more important to get a real one. >> we did. >> anyway, let's go to e the present time. here we are in december of 2013 looking way ahead, but not too far ahead because a year from now we'll be right in the middle of this thing. everyone will announce a the 2014 election. everybody willing in this thing. we'll know the field. and so my question is is he doing what he has to do? i love bill grade. bill grade is a great leader in philadelphia. you hear this great reporting by jonathan martin this weekend in the "times." there's hillary clinton asking what you and i would do in the same situation. you're asking somebody to spot the people and who they are in the community. who the state reps, the city council people. you got to know if you want to run for office. >> you have to if you're going to run for president. listen, clintons are good at this. bill clinton is a master at this.
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you and i remember. we were on the air during the funeral of claretta scott king. >> he didn't say nothing about religion. there's a woman in there. he beat those ministers. it's chilling how good he is. can he bring it back? can he bring back the love? >> well, you know -- >> i think it's there, myself. >> if obama had lost and if that could in some way have been blamed on the clintons even if he got the nomination and lost because they were insufficiently supported or something like that, i think there would be some lingering feelings. but he won. and he won again. and there's no reason to hold a grudge, i think. >> i like to be the sunshine guy around here, joy as you know. not going to be debbie downer in this world. i think one good thing is going to come out of this administration. it's going to be a mixed bag so far. it's been tough and he's done some great things.
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like health care. and i think the thing with encouraging equality of people with different orientation. women, a third of the supreme court are now women. stock market, if you're rich through the roof, you have a 401(k) through the roof. a lot of these are good. but i noticed this administration, the way he picks people to the top jobs, there's a lot of -- i don't want to say color blind, that's not a good call. but these aren't the old jobs that african-americans used to get. they only got the hhs and the hud jobs. >> yep. commerce. >> you got to get the alphabet jobs. that's gone. obama is so good about this. the next democratic president is going to have to honor that. you're going to see a lot of african-american faces. a lot more people mixed in. >> absolutely. they've been substantive. eric hold ser a consequential player. and i think going forward if
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hillary clinton runs as i believe she is going to, one of the things that's going to speak well of her among african-americans was the service she provided to the administration. that and the stellar job campaigning for the re-election. that does a lot. even more than that, you're not going to have a rift within the african-american community where the leadership is going one way and the base is going the other. that was an issue too. there's not going to be a tug of war. i think because the clintons showed themselves to be loyal enough within the obama project, they will be there. it won't be enough to stop them. >> joy, you're great. i've got to go. thanks so much. up next, the republican national committee seems to think racism ended in this country way back in 1955. and this is "hardball," the place for politics.
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back to "hardball." time for the sideshow. the republican national committee is back tracking today after saying yesterday that racism has ended in america. in a tweet meant to honor the work of civil rights icon rosa parks, the rnc tweeted out a image of parks with this bungled caption. quote, today we remember rosa parks' bold stand in her role in ending racism. many found this to be inaccurate and offensive. today took to twitter to take their outrage. quote, previous quote should have been remember her role in fighting to end racism. it's still hard to imagine making that kind of mistake. finally, ron burgundy may be a fictional news anchor, that didn't stop him from co-hosting a local news program in
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bismarck, north dakota, on saturday night. it's the latest promotion for the anchorman sequel. he was able to keep a straight face through the whole 30-minute newscast. here are some highlights. >> you look lovely tonight. >> thank you, ron. you too. >> are you married? >> no. >> well, i am. don't get ideas. >> we'll see what happens. i don't know. it's a tough call. >> i've never seen fighting in a hockey match before. that was fascinating. >> and there's also movember for mustaches. >> i'm fond of those. >> i was wondering about that. >> yes. >> up next, house republicans have made this congress the least productive, big surprise, ever. and what's worse, they're proud of it. they don't do nothing and they love it. you're watching "hardball," the place for politics.
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i'm milissa rehberger. federal investigators say a new york city train derailed on sunday. it was going 82 miles an hour on an 35 mile-an-hour curve. president obama observed world aids day today at the white house. he announced $100 million would go toward a new research initiative to combat hiv. vice president joe biden is in japan as part of a week-long asia trip. he'll also travel to china for talks over disputed air space. back to "hardball." i've got to tell you, if it was not already invented, i would say this congress invented the word "do nothing congress." >> but considering what republicans in congress want to do, it is a great blessing that
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congress has done next to nothing. >> we all know that president harry truman dubbed the 80th congress as the do nothing congress. yet the doing in congress in 1948 has nothing on this one. >> unfortunately, republicans talk work for everyone else, but when it comes to doing the work here in congress, well, they don't quite measure up to it. >> welcome back to "hardball." do nothing is about right when it comes to the track record of this congress. it's not yet the least productive year in history, but close to it. to give you some historical context. when newt gingrich's republican revolution came to power in 1995, they managed to pass what was then a record low of 88 laws that year. in the first 11 months of 2013, the current congress has passed only 52 laws since being gavelled into session in january including aid for hurricane sandy victims, cost of living adjustments to military veterans, and the act which reopened the federal government
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after the shutdown. they gave them credit for the grft they had shut. of course republicans in the current congress have been animated by a zeal to thwart anything president obama has his name on merely because he's done it. ron reagan is an msnbc contributor and margie o'mara is a democratic strategist. i want to start with margie. i've got to wonder what these republicans do that control by 18 votes or whatever it is. they go home to their districts. they used to go home with a card. they had it in a pocket. and people say what have you been doing. the democrats would have a list. closed the government, then reopened pit that's two bills we passed. what are they going to say? >> we did nothing. don't primary me. the only thing that would give them worse ratings because they have record low approval ratings. even if they did before the holidays got through every
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single thing on their list of things that are still outstanding, it would still be -- you still wouldn't be able to turn around these horrible numbers. so it's not just how inefficient they are, it's also the things that they actually want to do are unpopular. >> let's look at what the speaker had. this is his big excuse. it's in the "washington post" today. blaming everything on something. he blamed on the low level accomplishment under his leadership. here's how he explained it away. >> listen, we have a very divided country and we have a very divided government. i'm not going to sit here and underestimate the difficulty in finding the common ground. because there's not as much common ground here as there used to be. >> common ground hasn't always been on boehner's mind. listen to what boehner said in july when he viewed the lack of productivity as a badge of honor.
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>> any way you cut it and whoever's fault it is, you have presided over what is perhaps the least productive and certainly one of the least popular congresses in history. how do you feel about that? >> well, bob, we should not be judged on how many new laws we create. we ought to be judged on how many laws that we repeal. >> so ron, which is it? he's proud to have done nothing or blaming doing nothing on the democrats? i couldn't quite register the commonality of those two thoughts since they had nothing to do with each other. >> it is hard to figure out because it's essentially irrational. what you've got here is a marriage of strategy and ideology. when president obama came into office, the republican party decided they were going to obstruct everything that he tried to do. they were deliberately as a political strategy going to do nothing if they could get away with it. now, that marries the ideology of a certain segment of the republican party, the tea party
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who don't want to do anything ever. they think government should do less and less until it just withers away. so you get those combine. >> the congressional approval rating, ron, is 9%. >> 9%. >> look at that number. so his argument whether -- margie, whether he didn't do it because he didn't want to do it or couldn't do it, doesn't matter. and the argument the country's divided. it's always been divided. the question is do you get together with the other side and find a way to compromise or don't you? and he doesn't. >> not only we're all the losers by having such an inefficient congress and losing trust in our institutions which is what's happening, but they're paying a political cost. they have terrible ratings. more people say the republicans in congress are out for themselves than care about people. they have worse ratings than democrats. they keep taking hit after hit. their strategy is not working
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for them. >> you know, ron, tell me. this is like paint by numbers. why don't the republicans in the house do what they believe should be doing. so they think they should be a means test for people with more wealth so it'll be save money along the way. or they think medicare can be improved upon. they actually control the house of represents. all the revenue bills, all the entitlement stuff, all goes through them. they can set anything they want. why don't they pass to the government they think they believe in and send it to the president and the senate for approval? but they don't do that. >> no. it's mysterious. their response to obama care is indicative of the whole thing. i mean, keep in mind they want to repeal obama care, but they don't present any alternative. that's because the alternative -- obama care is the alternative. obama care is the republican alternative to a universal single payer plan. but they can't be for it because he's for it too.
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but they've got nothing else in their pocket. >> well, look what's left for the year. there's not a whole lot left because they haven't thought of a lot of things to do. they've got to deal with the budget around december 13th which is coming up. the republican strategy of obstructionism is getting in the way already. no budget. they have to do something on the rape of women and all that. the fight. they have to deal with benefits extension. they have to deal with the medicare doc fix. they've got a farm bill and decide whether we have a federal reserve chairman or not. they act like -- do they have a choice whether we have a federal reserve or not? >> here's the one thing that they may also fight over before the holidays. that's whether or not they should cut food for hungry children by $4 billion or $40 billion. s.n.a.p. >> the food stamp program. >> right. >> that will be well received. i think it's bad because i do think -- i know i wrote a book on this, but i believe in it. you can cut deals and get things
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done. you can fix social security and blame the parts you don't like on the other side. you can reform the tax system and blame what you don't like on the other side. but i prefer doing things and blame it on the other side. thank you. up next, the latest from republicans. president obama is anti-catholic, they say. never stops. this has to do with real estate, by the way. not religion. this is "hardball," the place for politics.
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democrats are fighting back against another round of strict new voting restrictions. this time in ohio. u.s. congresswoman marsha fudge says the effort to cut down on early voting days and same-day registration to make voters show photo i.d.s is to suppress votes of african-americans and other minorities. we've seen it in state after state, in 36 states in all just this year. where republicans want to make it harder for minorities, students, and elderly people to vote especially in cities where people tend to be democrats. make it harder to cast ballots. simple, huh? and we'll be right back.
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we're back. you can call it obama derangement system. the diplomatic edition. first the state department decided to move its embassy to the vatican to another part of rome into a compound that also houses the embassy to italy.
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it was also financial. it will save about $1 million a year. without missing a beat, conservatives called it part of an anti-catholic agenda by the president. the national republican senate committee posted on the website saying quote, the media is reporting the president plans to close the u.s. embassy to the vatican. this is the latest anti-religion pursuit of this administration. a slap in the face to catholic. americans. and former florida governor jeb bush tweeted, quote, why would our president close our embassy to the vatican? hopefully it is not retribution for catholic organizations opposing obama care. to be clear, the vatican embassy is not closing, never was going to close. it's moving to a new location that is ironically actually 1/10 mile closer to the vatican than the old building. while republicans are rejecting the vatican has it at all. thank you, both.
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i first heard this i was out in san francisco with my wife's family, and i hear, oh did you hear they're closing the vatican embassy? responds to, didn't even check the facts, just went with without source, fox, i don't know who it was. he says, is this just the derangement syndrome that everything the obama administration does it's another winston churchill bust that's been thrown out the window? >> well, most, but not all of the criticism is coming from the right. i mean, ray flynn was also among those who has been critical. >> who did he vote for? isn't he a scott friend guy? he's not exactly a democrat. >> he was clinton's appointee to the vatican. >> right.
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>> and you know, i think for these people, it really began with the former ambassadors to the vatican who feel -- >> tim nicholson is not a bad guy, but the former republican national chair -- >> he's a good guy. >> but he's the former republican national chairman. >> that is correct, but they feel their job -- that it's a slap because their job is getting a little less prestigious, but it's absolutely not true. >> charlie, what they're doing is taking -- [ everyone talking at once ] if they move the embassy to another building, which is inside a protected compound, it's a separate building, it's in a compound next to the united states embassy to italy. go ahead. >> yeah, the argument that james nicholson is making is ridiculous, that this is somehow anti-catholic, but at the same time, doesn't this seem like just another example of the obama administration tripping over its own feet? because here was an opportunity to engage with pope francis, who is a pope talking about poverty, talking about the things most catholics care about, issues of income inequality, things that
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the obama administration cares about. >> but how's this conflict with that? >> they allow themselves to get beat up for it. it was a dumb move not to position this better. $1.4 million isn't going to do much -- >> charlie, do you really believe -- you just said it, i guess you do, that the president's blown a chance to salute the good social policies and statements of the pope? you still can't do that? >> what i'm saying is that catholic voters are the swing voters in america. >> you're speaking my language. >> they're a complex electorate. you know that better than anyone, chris. but in this case, i really think the obama administration made a logical choice. it's about real estate, as you said, about savings, small savings. don't you think they could have packaged this a little bit better and not allowed the republicans to open the door to call this anti-catholic? come on, they really need that vote -- >> the republicans make the announcement. i'm with you, bad pr. >> i completely disagree, because they have been talking about making this move, merging the two -- >> since "w.." >> since "w," years and years.
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this is under jim nicholson they were talking about doing this. this is not obama, and you can't have it both ways. the republicans cannot say why did we not pay attention to valid security concerns in benghazi, but now when there are valid security concerns in italy, we should disregard those and, you know, keeping a good face on having this big building. >> let's get back to charlie -- >> here's a question i have -- >> charlie, can you hear me? >> this is a good -- >> can you hear me? >> yes. >> charlie, let's play one of the things where you reverse the tape. suppose the embassy over there to the vatican got hit and it came out that they were thinking of putting it behind the protective walls of the italian embassy compound, it would have been much safer there, but they decided not to do it. who would have been blamed then? just a thought. >> right. of course. of course. consolidating is wise for security reasons, cost savings are needed everywhere. it's a no-brainer. all i'm talking about is the packaging on this.
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if you remember the remembrances of jfk with the anniversary of the assassination and think of the pinnacle of catholic power in america, which was 1963, and look at where it is now, there is something here about the democratic party losing its influence with catholic voters, and they just open themselves up to a punch that they didn't have to open themselves up to, and in keep doing this, and there's got to be some sense of reckoning for the way in which they present things, even things that make perfect sense. if you don't sell it to the people who are catholic and let them know this has nothing to do with not caring about you and the issues that you represent as a catholic voter, we understand you're the swing voters in this country, we're going to pay attention to you and respect you, but we're -- >> okay, maybe we should have like we have all kinds of -- we have gay, we have jewish, all kinds of people in the white house making sure the president is sensitive to the concerns of the community. maybe there should be a catholic person in the white house, but i don't think so. thank you. >> why not? >> we'll talk.
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thank you. i like the way you talk, even though you may have overdone it. we'll be right back. "let me finish" tonight with [knock] no one was at home, but on the kitchen table sat three insurance policies. the first had lots of coverage. the second, only a little. but the third was... just right! bear: hi! yeah, we love visitors. that's why we moved to a secluded house in the middle of the wilderness. just the right coverage at just the right price. coverage checker from progressive.
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"let me finish" tonight with this. i read in the newspaper over the weekend about the sunni and shia muslims killing each other in iraq, and i thought, there they go again. what are we to think of a millennium-old religious fight with its roots so many centuries ago? what are we to do but ask why we went into iraq in the first place if that country's going to
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be driven by religious feuding back to where it would have been had we never entered the country? my fear shared by a good many of us is that our being in that country, getting killed in that country, killing people in that country has had very little to do with what that country's future's going to be. iraq's future will be driven by events far beyond anything that occurred during our dozen or so years in country. it will be driven by what iraq is, not what we tried to make it to be. and here at home, can you believe there are people around us right now who want to start an old religious war here over where the vatican embassy is located in rome? well, they are. at least, they have been. "plans to close the u.s. embassy to the vatican" no. the u.s. embassy at the vatican is not going to close, but it was the national republican senatorial committee who put out the word that it was in a quote and called it a slap in the face to catholics. when a perfect trouble-making thing to say, if you think about it. by the way, the nrsc said the media was reporting the embassy was going to close. in other words, the people on
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that republican committee weren't sure it was happening, but they knew it was sure good stuff to start up a little religious war out there. they would love this stuff over in baghdad, wouldn't they? and that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us. "all in with chris hayes" starts right now. good evening from new york. i'm chris hayes. americans are back at work after a long holiday weekend, which means they are also back at their computers. and today that means two things, shopping and health care. >> let's talk cyber monday! >> it is cyber monday! >> cyber monday. >> yes, it is cyber monday. >> cyber monday. >> cyber monday. >> it's expected to be a record-breaking day. >> in case you missed, it, it's cyber monday, a hallowed american tradition in which millions flock online to hastily purchase discounted goods for their nearest and dearest.